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Keywords

Claims-based data, health information technology, office system tools, profiling, quality

 

Authors

  1. Davis, Mark A.
  2. Pavur, Robert J.

Abstract

Background: Claims-based quality profiles are increasingly used by third-party payers as a means of monitoring and remunerating physician performance. As traditional approaches to assessing performance yield to electronically generated data, identifying practice tools capable of influencing the behavior of these measures becomes essential to effectively managing medical practices.

 

Purpose: The aim of this study was to examine the effect of using office system tools (i.e., patient registries, physician reminders, and flow sheets) and health information technology (HIT) on claims-based quality profile scores in primary care practices.

 

Methodology: We analyzed survey responses from primary care physicians (n = 191) regarding their use of office system tools and HIT. These responses were linked to quality profile scores obtained from a Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas claims-based data set.

 

Findings: Elevated quality profile scores were associated with physicians who reported higher use of HIT. In addition, the influence of one office system tool, physician reminders, was contingent upon the availability and use of HIT.

 

Practice Implications: Our findings indicate that primary care practices that fail to implement or use HIT appropriately will fare poorly in systems that monitor and reward performance based on measures derived from claims data. Linking prompts or reminders directly to clinical actions that influence quality indicators endorsed by payers should be a component of quality assurance programs.